The first medical marijuana dispensaries in Illinois opened for business Monday, attracting the attention of patients from a variety of cities.
"It's a big surprise. I've been waiting forever for this to happen. It's a good thing. It's a good thing for everybody," said medical marijuana patient Michael Witfoth, from Chester, according to WSIL. There are currently eight state-licensed locations that provide medicinal marijuana to patients in Illinois.
Harbory's medical marijuana dispensary, which opened at 5 a.m., drew people from several different cities on opening day. Kevin Sauls, a 54-year-old from Ridgeway, managed to make it first in line, according to The Southern. "I can take a big sigh of relief and take a deep breath," he said. "We are making history today, and it is special to be a part of something like this."
About 100 people were cheering as the doors were unlocked by dispensary officials. "I never thought I would see it happen and I can't believe that it is happening, actually," Sauls said, who left satisfied, saying that he paid $100 for a quarter ounce.
Bill Wilson, a 52-year-old Chicagoan, stated he is anti-drug and anti-alcohol, but he is trying marijuana due to years of taking anti-inflammatory drugs and prescription painkillers that mess with his stomach, according to The Chicago Tribune . Wilson added that he does not even like the smell of marijuana. His decision to try it comes from seeing how it helped his sister, who used it to treat her multiple sclerosis.
"This is going to be a godsend," he said while holding $180 worth of marijuana.
"We're thrilled to be giving this medicine to patients," said Gus Koukoutsakis, co-owner of EarthMed. He explained that the dispensaries carry 11 strains of marijuana. The names of these strains include Grape God Bud and Chemdawg, which are sold for $20 a gram.